By In Ballet 1 hour 27 min

Bolt, Shostakovich's forbidden ballet which was never performed after its premiere in 1931, in a new scenic version by .

Shostakovich composed a caustically humourous ballet, blending popular tunes, serious music, circus music, waltzes, marches, tangos. He had imagined his ballet as a joyful lampoon of proletarian drama. His intention was to highlight the eventful and ambiguous relationship existing between proletarian experience and the representation given of it by the Soviet vanguard.

Alexei Ratmansky's choreography develops into a true marvel, opening with a ballet of giant robots ans ending in a blood red delirious grand parade.

This is captivating theatrical music by a stupendous young composing talent, full of acid caricature and robust comedy, not yet weighed down with the shadows and storms that were soon to break into his life

In Soviet Russia in 1930, the cultural energies of the revolution – the jazz, the constructivist art, the Meyerhold experiments in theatre – were still alive and bubbling. But Stalin was already turning revolution into a brutal state orthodoxy. With the launch of his 1928 five-year plan, and its attendant political persecutions, artists found themselves in serious danger if they were considered to have fallen foul of the official cultural line.

One early victim of these hardening times was The Bolt, a 1931 ballet with designs by Tatiana Bruni, music by Dmitri Shostakovich and choreography by Fedor Lopukhov. It's currently the subject of an exhibition at London's Gallery of Russian Art and Design, which showcases a fabulously intact collection of Bruni's costume designs and even a few of the actual costumes.